• Question: if you have iron in your blood do you actually have microscopic metal in you blood

    Asked by opolotjwh to David, Helen, Ian, rhysphillips, Sarah on 24 Jun 2011.
    • Photo: Rhys Phillips

      Rhys Phillips answered on 14 Jun 2011:

      Yes the iron in your blood is the metal – in fact that’s part of the reason your blood is red, the same colour as rust. In both cases it’s the mixture of iron and oxygen that makes it go red.

    • Photo: Sarah Cook

      Sarah Cook answered on 15 Jun 2011:


    • Photo: Ian van der Linde

      Ian van der Linde answered on 15 Jun 2011:

      You do! There are lot’s of different metals needed in the human body, although there are lots of other metals that are very bad for us too!

    • Photo: Helen Fletcher

      Helen Fletcher answered on 24 Jun 2011:

      Yes we do. All living organisms need iron as it binds oxygen which is essential to life. Have you ever seen X-men? In one of the films Magneto feeds a security guard an iron tablet and then kills him by sucking all the iron particles out. That is quite unrealistic though- tiny soluble iron particles (ions) are not magnetic in the same way as solid iron in which the particles are bound together in a network